IUCN Species of the Day: Crau Plain Grasshopper
Photo credit: Laurent Tatin
The Crau Plain Grasshopper, Prionotropis hystrix rhodanica, has not yet been evaluated for the IUCN Red List of Threatened SpeciesTM. However, it has a provisional assessment of ‘CRITICALLY ENDANGERED’. It is endemic to the La Crau area – a unique Mediterranean dry steppe in southern France. This species is completely flightless and, therefore, not able to colonize new habitats easily.
The Crau Plain Grasshopper is strongly threatened by the destruction and fragmentation of its habitat resulting from landscape conversion (agriculture and industrial development). Little is known about the population ecology of this species, but the populations seem to be very small and are becoming more and more isolated from each other. In fact, the species has completely disappeared from several sites.
This remarkable grasshopper species is currently the focus of various research projects aiming at establishing conservation management plans. Parts of its natural habitat are protected and managed within the framework of the natural reserve of La Crau, the only zone where this grasshopper can still survive. In order to counteract habitat degradation in other parts of the La Crau, a translocation project is currently being planned.
Geographic Range of the Crau Plain Grasshopper
Credit: IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™
To learn more about the Crau Plain Grasshopper, click here. Or visit the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species™ by clicking their logo below.
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